GARY Rowett thinks Jordan Pickford is coming on in leaps and bounds in goal for Burton Albion.
The 19-year-old, on loan from Sunderland, had his best game yet for the Brewers at the weekend.
He pulled off two top class saves as Albion beat Exeter 1-0 away and also dominated his area, keeping a third clean sheet in the process.
“I think he’s got better and better,” said Brewers boss Rowett. “We know all about his kicking but he’s coming and catching or punching the crosses well too.
“He’s being proactive.
“He’s got lots and lots of good attributes he’s showing more and more.”
Pickford did not have the easiest of starts at the Pirelli Stadium, going back to Sunderland after just three games with a knee injury.
When he returned in September, Albion were in the midst of a three-game losing spell and in his second game he made a mistake as the Brewers lost 3-1 at AFC Wimbledon.
Some fans began calling for Dean Lyness’ recall – but Albion are now seeing the benefits of sticking with Pickford.
“If you’re playing at a level you’ve not really played at before, there’s always going to be an initial difference of style,” said Rowett.
“I think the first two or three games, he hadn’t played a lot of football so it’s going to take a few games (to settle).”
Pickford, the Brewers bopss says, is also reaping the rewards of working with Kevin Poole, Burton’s goalkeeping coach.
The 50-year-old is a highly rated member of Rowett’s backroom team, with Rams stopper Adam Legzdins, who worked with Poole during his spell at Albion, just one of the keepers to sing his praises.
“Kevin’s had a massive impact (on Jordan),” said Rowett.
“The goalkeepers are with him for 60 per cent of the week - we don’t even see them except for in a far distant corner of the training ground.
“The great thing about Pooley and other members of staff is they just get on with their job.
“I’ve never heard one keeper say they didn’t enjoy their sessions with Pooley.
“Adam Legzdins credits him with where he is now and speaks very highly of him.”
ALBION’S FA Cup clash with Hereford United has been moved to Sunday, November 10, kick-off 3pm.
Tickets will be cheaper for the first round tie than for a league game, with seats at £15 for adults, £12 for senior citizens and £8 for under-16s.
For those wishing to stand - with payment on the day - it will be just £12 for adults, £10 for pensioners and £5 for under-16s.
Seat tickets in advance can be bought by calling 01283 565938.